Abel Tesfaye, also known as “The Weeknd,” is highly regarded for his signature R&B tones. Active since 2010, the Toronto-native is now one of the most important figures in today’s music scene. Continuing to solidify his place among hip-hop’s best, The Weeknd released his first EP “My Dear Melancholy” on March 30.
The six-track, mini-album came as a surprise to everyone, announced only days before its release. Just 24 hours after its reveal, “My Dear Melancholy” was streamed more than 26 million times on Apple Music alone, according to XXLMag. The Weeknd is slated to perform at hit music festivals this summer including Coachella and Lollapalooza, and this album is sure to add to his already extensive repertoire.
What I liked
From the first track, “Call Out My Name,” The Weeknd goes back to the tones of his early albums. He speaks on his separation from Selena Gomez, including her recent kidney donation. The controversy comes within the lyrics, where he claims he tried to donate his kidney to her.
Another track, “Wasted Times,” features production credits from electronic artist Skrillex, creating a diverse, yet signature sound. Again, controversial due to his lyricism, he takes shots at Gomez. He says she wasted his time, and harps on it. He claims she isn’t even half of what his previous ex, Bella Hadid, is as a person. The song is his plea for another chance with Hadid.
The EP closes with “Privilege,” a song in which The Weeknd takes his last shots at Selena on this record –– a recurring theme throughout this this breakup album. He continues to suggest drug use and frequent sex will heal his problems –– themes that have been prevalent in past albums like “Trilogy” and “Kiss Land.” The songs instrumentals are really mellow, and even though the track is short, I think it is one of the highlights of the EP
What I didn’t like
The EP is solid, but seemingly repetitive. We get it Abel; you broke up with Selena.
His lyrics can be pretty hard to relate too because they’re so depressing. He has a tendency to do that, but this more than usual. The track “Hurt You” also feels like a track from his last album “Starboy,” which kind of throws the mood off before the final track.
Instrumentally this album is fantastic. He revisits the sound that gave him his identity. Each and every track is produced at album quality, which makes this mysterious EP so intriguing to me. I believe that he is using his high-profile relationship to create controversy, which grows tiresome. The depressing lyrics definitely take fans back in time on this project, as opposed to his recent electronic hip-hop approach. I wish he didn’t speak on Gomez over and over again, but I know it creates publicity. The music is so good anyway I’ll let it slide. “My Dear Melancholy” seemed to be curated for the hopeless romantics of the world. While listening, The Weeknd really sparked my own mind, and had me considering my current and past relationships.
I give “My Dear Melancholy,” a 4 out of 5.